COUNTY NEWS: Consumer advice as two retail ‘giants’ go into administration

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Following the news this week that BHS and Austin Reed have gone into administration, consumers are being advised to shop safe.

Hannah Maundrell, editor in chief at www.money.co.uk, said: “I predict this is just the start of a domino-effect of downfalls we see on the high street as former giants lose out to their digital competitors.

“If you have gift vouchers from either Austin Reed or BHS spend these ASAP.”

Ms Maundrell warns that ‘unfortunately a company’s refund policy is often scrapped once they enter administration’ but stressed ‘that doesn’t mean you should be left out of pocket’.

She said: “Similarly, if the company are unable to fulfil an order and you have already laid down either a partial deposit or the full amount, then you could still get your money back.

“If you have paid for an item with a value of over £100 on a credit card, Section 75 of the consumer credit acts means your credit card company should refund the full amount if the company can’t. If you paid by Visa or MasterCard debit, you should be able to make a Chargeback.

“Most larger stores will keep their customer service helplines open throughout the administration process and should be able to update you about the status of any outstanding orders.”

More information can be found at www.money.co.uk